A couple of weeks past and River improved, she was still quiet and reserved, but she began to cope better in more situations, the Doctor never leaving her side definitely helped matters.

They had started to leave the TARDIS, going on short afternoons out, only on planets that the Doctor knew the entire history of, so he was certain there would be no trouble. The trips were normally incident free, unless they suddenly encountered a large group of people, then River appeared to shut down. If she managed to remain on her feet, she would just stop and start to tremble, but a couple of times she had collapsed to the ground and curled into a ball, refusing to move until everyone except the Doctor had left.

Today however, almost a month after River had been taken, was perfect. She and the Doctor had had a quiet picnic in the azure fields of Gradd, and they were now watching a 31st century rom-com. Jack had joined them, sitting on the arm chair as they cuddled on the sofa.

As the credits rolled Jack began to speak.

'So, it's been lovely spending all this time with you guys.' He began. 'Even if we didn't get quite as close as I'd have liked.' He threw a quick wink at the Doctor. 'But I think it's time I head, I'm pretty sure there are some two heard autons that have yet to make my acquaintance.'

'Lucky them.' The Doctor quipped, before speaking more seriously. 'You're welcome to stay Jack, but if you want I can take you back tomorrow morning.'

'Thanks Doc.' Jack replied. 'I'm gonna go grab some shut eye. Night kids.'

Shortly after Jack left, the Doctor and River also headed for their bedroom. It didn't take long for them both to get ready for bed, and soon they were both lying on their sides, facing each other with the covers pulled up to their chests.

'I think I should go too.' River said, not looking at the Doctor.

'You can't.' The Doctor said firmly.

'I have to.' She replied. 'We both know the TARDIS can't cope with both us at once, too many psychopaths.'

'No.' The Doctor sat up, his voice now raised. 'We both need to stop using the TARDIS as a half hearted excuse, she's the most brilliant machine in the entire universe, of course she can cope.' He gently pulled her chin do she was looking at him, and spoke more softly. 'It's us who can't cope, or at least we think we can't. You've said I shouldn't travel alone, and I don't think you should either.'

'But I won't.' River tried to argue. 'I'll be seeing you, having adventures with you, just not necessarily this you, the you that's you right now.'

'That doesn't count River, you'll either be travelling with a younger version of me, who you can't tell what happened, or an older who you won't. I know you River.' He implored. 'Don't try and convince me you'd voluntarily talk to someone, even me, about this.'

River began to speak, but the Doctor continued.

'You need to stay, I need you to stay. We work better together River, please can't we at least try.'

River didn't reply for a few moments, the Doctor waited as she slowly collected her thoughts.

'But I've seen older versions of you, and they're not with me, it can't work. The timelines wouldn't allow it.'

The Doctor took a deep breath, readying himself to again try and convince her to stay. 'They can River, I lie, and so do you, neither of us really knows the other's future. I know it won't be forever, but just for a little while, we can make it work.' They were now both sat cross legged on the bed, he took her hands in his. 'I love you River, and I refuse to let you go again. If you leave I'm following half a step behind.'

As River looked away the Doctor's hearts faltered, she was going to reject him, she was going to leave, like they all did in the end.

'Sweetie.' She began hesitantly. 'You know I love you too, I have for as long as I can remember.'

A grin quickly took over the Doctor's face, but it disappeared as River continued.

'But you'll get bored. I can't cope in a crowd for god's sake, how are you meant to go off and save planets when I collapse in the presence of eight perfectly harmless humans. I can't tether you like that.'

This time it was the Doctor who didn't get a chance to argue.

'I'll be fine Sweetie, I'll go back to the university.' River gently caressed the Doctor's face as she spoke. 'I'll just stick to independent study for now. We'll both be able to continue with our lives if I go, it's the right thing to do.'

She rose as she finished talking, the Doctor quick to follow her. In silence they made their way to the console room, River didn't wait for permission before entering coordinates and preparing the TARDIS for flight. The Doctor, didn't interfere, just stayed close to River and watched her.

The flight was short and smooth, River's connection with the TARDIS paying off. Finally, as they landed with the smallest of bumps River turned to look at the Doctor.

'So, um, I'll be seeing you soon Sweetie.' She pressed a lingering kiss to his lips before leaving the TARDIS.

As she made her way inside the university and up to her room River allowed her tears to flow freely, she had landed the TARDIS at four in the morning, so the hallways were deserted. She was so focused on getting to her room with out meeting anyone that she didn't hear the footsteps behind her until she reached her door.

'I told you I'd be just half a step behind.' The Doctor said when she turned round. 'I meant it River. If you're staying here, so am I.'

As River stood there, shocked that he had come, the Doctor stepped past her, and opened the door to her room.

'Aren't you going to invite me in?' He asked jokingly, not waiting for her reply before walking in.

Wordlessly River span and followed him in, as she reached him he pulled her into a tight hug.

'You're really staying.' She murmured into his chest.

'For as long as you'll have me, and longer if possible.' He spoke softly into her hair. 'You're not holding back Love, I choose to stay by your side, I can't imagine being anywhere else. You're it for me River, you're everything.'

As they stood intertwined as one, they each contemplated the future, both decided to ignore what they knew was to come. Right now it didn't matter, they had each other, and that was all they needed. The future could wait, they were happy, in the present, together.

So... I feel terrible, you can probably guess that it's almost exam time for me again so I'm back to writing once more as a slightly productive form of procrastination. I can't apologise enough for leaving it so long to finish this, I feel so guilty (excuse the pun (: ) but I'd love to hear what you think.

Finally have a happy holidays, and I hope you've ahead a good 2013.